Tenth Sunday after Trinity – Saturday
Pray for one another. – James 5:16.
You must not only pray for yourself, my dear Christian, but also for others. Christians should pray for one another.
Since you should love your neighbor as yourself, you should also pray for your neighbor as for yourself. Pray for your loved ones, whom God has united with you by ties of kinship. Pray for your friends; this is the greatest possible favor you can bestow on them. Pray for your fellow Christians, that the grace of God may always abide with them. Pray for him whom you see erring. Pray for your enemy.
The Savior says: “Pray for them that despitefully use you and persecute you” (Matthew 5:44). If you pray for your enemy, you will surely love him, for you cannot hate him for whom you pray. Do not forget your pastor when you pray. The Apostle Paul asked for such intercession in Colossians 4: “Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds” (v. 3).
And the same Apostle admonishes us to pray “for all men” (1 Timothy 2:1). This is in accord with the gracious will of God that all men be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. There are Christians who make a list of those for whom they wish to pray particularly, and who daily put this list before them when they pray in private. That is a very good thing to do. But you must not pray for the dead. “It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). God has judged the dead. Their souls are either with the blessed in heaven or with the damned in hell. It is a violation of the honor of God to pray for the dead. God judges righteously. But pray, pray, PRAY for those who are still living, for they still live “in the day of salvation” (II Corinthians 6:2).
“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (James 5:16 b).
PRAYER – Lord, merciful God, who desires that we, Thy children, pray for one another, pour out on me, I beg Thee, a fervent desire to pray for others, that I may gladly and willingly, diligently and fervently do according to this Thy will, and that I may firmly believe that my intercessions are not in vain, but move Thee most mercifully to have compassion on my neighbor, for Thou most certainly desires the spiritual and eternal welfare of all souls, as we bring all of this before Thee in the name of Jesus Christ, the world’s Savior. Amen.
Sing, pray, and keep His ways unswerving;
perform thy duties faithfully;
and trust His Word, though undeserving;
thou yet shalt find it true for thee.
God never yet forsook in need,
the soul that trusted Him indeed.
(Hymn 518, st. 7 – TLH)