Because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father! – Galatians 4:6.
Those who do not believe in our dear Savior, Jesus Christ, cannot truly pray in a manner well pleasing to God. For they neither know nor accept the grace and love of God which is to be found only in Jesus Christ, and embraced only through faith in Him.
They are subject to the wrath of God. How can they truly pray? How can they have the childlike confidence in God necessary for a true prayer? How can their prayer be acceptable and well pleasing to God? – No, unbelievers cannot pray. But we poor sinners who believe in our Savior Jesus Christ are God’s dear children. And God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, who cries from within us and together with us: “Abba, Father!” We can truly pray, and in a manner well pleasing to God. We have the grace of God; we are holy and beloved. We always pray in the name of Jesus Christ.
In all our prayers and supplications we make this plea, that through Jesus Christ we have been reconciled to God. And from within us and together with us the Holy Spirit always prays and supplicates, the Spirit of our Savior, whom the Savior has sent into our hearts. Thus do we pray with a confidence acceptable unto God. We rely on and we plead the Word of our Savior: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in My name, He will give it you” (John 16:23). We are led by the Spirit of Christ, who is also the Spirit of the Father, working through His Word, to tell our heavenly Father everything, like little children; all our troubles, and always to trust that He will graciously grant our prayer and give us the best and most salutary gifts.
Behold, dear Christian, this is true prayer.
PRAYER – Ah, my heavenly Father, at all times give me the right Teacher to teach me how to pray, Thy Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Thy dear Son, my Savior, that in the name of this, my Atoner, I may pray to Thee, and that in true faith and with joyful confidence I may commit myself into Thy outstretched, almighty, and gracious arms. And then hear my prayer, O Father, and richly, abundantly give me all that is good, right, and salutary for me, and fill my poor heart with peace and joy through my dear Savior, Christ Jesus. Amen.
All honor, praise, and majesty,
to Father, Son, and Spirit be,
our God forever glorious;
in whose rich grace we’ll run our race,
till we depart victorious.
(Hymn 524, st. 7 – TLH).