With all the recent events, there’s been a steady stream of tweets and posts about prayer (#prayforboston, #prayforwest). The Huffington Post had an article on Psalm 46- “Be still and know that I am God.” Stillness at this point seems like an unlikely response. Even if we affect an outward stillness, how can we still our inward being? Besides, the whole nation is in turmoil right now. To adopt a meditative repose and quietly trust in “God’s sovereignty” seems a little feigned, detached, and impersonal. God’s sovereignty shouldn’t be an excuse for inactivity or lukewarmness. In my mind, prayer, in all its intimacy, candor, and uncouthness, does more than stillness because it gets your being in motion toward God. Read the rest of this entry
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I began considering this question recently when I came across a post from Better Bibles Blog on how to translate 1 Thessalonians 5:17:
“One can not unceasingly pray in the world as we know it. God can do it (I would think). Although, if he would do it in front of us (aka Jesus), we probably wouldn’t perceive it being done. Also perhaps, we’ll be able to do it with resurrection bodies.”
In answering the question, “Can we pray without ceasing in this life?” complicated ideas that plunge into the erudite are brought up, such as: collocational clash, words and reality semantics, and relevance theory.
Reading the comments was like walking through an exegetical minefield. I don’t think God requires that we understand complex ideas like this to understand His word, for at least three reasons:
Turning to the book of Ephesians is like zooming out as far as possible on Google maps.
The epistle is an absolute satellite view of God’s eternal purpose for the church. But you live day to day in the details of street view, negotiating intersections, cross-walks, and traffic lights. The zoomed out perspective helps orient you. It lets you see the beauty of a composite whole that is bigger than your struggles. Something all the time related to, but beforehand unimagined about, your plod across the contours of daily life. When you see this view, you begin to realize the shapes of continents- significant land masses that defy indifference. All of a sudden your search for direction is conceptually tied to this cosmic panorama.
Ephesians presents 3 “continents” to define our Christian world- the spirit of man, the economy of God, and the Body of Christ