• Normal Prayer Article by George Grant

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2003

    Prayer is the most common Christian expression of authentic faith; but it may be among the least practiced Christian disciplines. It is said that prayer is the universal language of the soul, but it is actually the solitary province of the supplicating saint. Prayer, as the unconscious heart cry in times of distress, is the currency of all humanity; but prayer, as the deep and committed soul-bond in communion with almighty God, is an exceptionally rare and precious jewel. The heroes of the faith have always been diligent, vigilant, and constant in prayer. They humbled themselves with prayers, petitions, and … View Resource

  • Our Daily Bread Article by Danny Wuerffel

    FROM TABLETALK | June 2007

    C. S. Lewis writes in The Problem of Pain that “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pain: it is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” I don’t imagine Lewis had this particular phrase of the Lord’s Prayer in mind as he penned these words, but in all the tragedies and turmoil surrounding Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans, God has indeed shouted at me many new lessons about “daily bread.”  I grew up as the son of an Air Force chaplain in what would be considered a middle-class family … View Resource

  • Prayer and Culture Article by Gene Edward Veith

    FROM TABLETALK | June 2007

    I recently headed the translation committee for our church body’s new hymnal and worship book. Our previous hymnal included the choice of a modernized version of the Lord’s Prayer. We found, though, that no one used it. Even the churches that had given themselves over to contemporary worship — claiming that old-fashioned language and time-honored practices were incomprehensible to “modern” or “postmodern” people today — when they deigned to pray the Lord’s Prayer used the old-fashioned, time-honored version, complete with “thy’s,” “art’s,” and “trespasses.” The Lord’s Prayer is the ultimate prayer, comprehending everything that we can pray for … View Resource

  • Prayer and Its Discontents Article by Kaki Cobb

    FROM TABLETALK | October 2006

    Prayer is many things to many people. To the Muslim it is a daily ritual, to the Catholic it is a work that helps merit salvation, and to the evangelical Christian it is often a struggle. Books are written, classes are taught, all with the purpose to teach Christians how to have a better prayer life. That is because if we are honest with ourselves, the majority of us struggle with prayer. We live in a society of instant gratification. Many of us have been socially conditioned to expect to receive whatever we want whenever we want it. I truly … View Resource

  • Prayers Well Aimed Article by John Sartelle

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2009 | 1 Timothy 2

    First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way” (1 Tim. 2:1–2). Those words seem general and somewhat bland when we initially read them. In Paul’s day those were powerful words that set a strategic priority for the prayers of the church. Verse one had to be important to Paul, for he opened the sentence with “First of all” — in other words, “This is a priority … View Resource

  • Praying for Church Leaders Article by Robert Norris

    FROM TABLETALK | June 2008

    I am not used to being considered a heretic. Yet recently, when a colleague and I visited a friend who teaches theology at a famous British university, we found ourselves faced with this charge! In a conversation that had quickly turned to the subject of theology, we found ourselves defending the idea that the death of Jesus Christ was that of a penal substitution in which He in our place bore the wrath of God that rightfully should have been visited upon us. This understanding is both biblical and the historic confession of the church, yet it was this that earned … View Resource

  • Praying for Politicians Article by David Robertson

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2013

    Having been a minister for twenty-six years and an editor of a church magazine for some of that time, I can safely say that there is no subject more likely to get you into controversy than the troubled relationship of the gospel to politics, unless you dare to touch the modern-day idol of people’s children. So when I was asked to write this column, my heart sank; I knew the heresy antennas of many would already be raised. To make matters worse, I write this just after the re-election of President Obama, a result that caused many of my … View Resource

  • The Puritans on Prayer Article by Colin Rowley

    FROM TABLETALK | June 2012

    Psalm 66:18 states, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear.” In our present day, how often do we hear the truth that God does not hear the prayers of the unrighteous? In my personal voyage, I have very rarely, if ever, read a book or heard a sermon addressing this characteristic of prayer. Unfortunately, the evangelical church has become subject to the seeker-sensitive tactics that have drastic effects on the communication of the truths of God’s Word. A perfect example of this is a recent book on prayer that was No. 1 on … View Resource

  • Reckless Fervor Article by R.C. Sproul Jr.

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2003

    One of the oddest things to hinder our prayers is fear. Many of us are reluctant to pray in front of others. We fear, I suppose, that those who are listening might be critiquing our prayers. That fear is both sensible and foolish. It is sensible in the sense that people actually do, as they listen to others pray, make mental critiques. I know people do this because I have been known to do it myself. I have run the prayers of hundreds through my own systematic theology grid, looking to filter out the folly. It is foolish, however, because … View Resource

  • The Silence of the Lambs Article by R.C. Sproul Jr.

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2013

    The world, Paul tells us, knows what’s coming. Romans 1 not only highlights the universal guilt of all men, but, ironically, defines that guilt as the denial of what we know. We know that there is a God and that we fail to meet His standard. We know, in short, that we are in trouble. But, we seek to suppress that truth in unrighteousness. The lexical background of the Greek word translated as suppress suggests something like a heavy metal spring that we try to hold down as long as we can. I believe, however, that we get closer … View Resource

  • They Devoted Themselves to Prayer Article by Edmund Clowney

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2003

    From the Mount of Olives, where Jesus ascended to heaven, the disciples went to a prayer meeting. They met in a familiar upstairs room in Jerusalem. All 11 apostles and the women who had been with Jesus were there. They prayed in the name of Jesus Christ, who had disappeared in the clouds as they watched. Their prayer was addressed to the sovereign God, Master and Ruler. They knew that Jesus was at His right hand and would send His Spirit. He had charged them to ” ‘be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to … View Resource

  • Thy Kingdom Come Article by Archie Parrish

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2003

    Henry was an ornery agnostic. His wife, Eunice, was a devout Christian. They lived in a farming community, where a yearlong drought was devastating the local economy. At the request of many of the farmers, the pastor of a local church called the community together to pray for rain. As Eunice was leaving to go to the church, Henry challenged, “Do you really believe that it will rain if you ask for it?” Eunice opened her Bible and read to Henry: “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. Elijah was a man with a nature like … View Resource

  • With One Voice Article by Jack Kinneer

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2003

    English-speaking Christians around the world know the Lord’s Prayer in the wording of the King James Version (Matt. 6:9–13; Luke 11:2–4). Believers from diverse church traditions have this prayer in common and can recite it in unison. We are able to remember it because the Lord’s Prayer in the King James is memorable and poetic. In this, the King James Version captures the character of the prayer in the original Greek, which is even more poetic. There can be little doubt that the prayer was intended to be learned by heart and so be readily available to the … View Resource