Tenth Sunday after Trinity – Tuesday
Thou shalt worship the Lord, thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve. —Matthew 4:10.
To whom should we pray? Surely, you are not in doubt about this. We should pray only to the true God, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. He, the Triune God, is the only true God. And we have learned to know Him from His Word. Everything that is called God beside Him is an idol, an imaginary, a man-made god.
Wherever such an idol is worshiped, as among the Jews, the Unitarians, and the Masonic Lodge, you should not take part in such sinful worship. “Nonsense!” some say, “Why, there is but one God.” They mean to say that one may also pray to the so-called gods of the people just mentioned. It is true; there is but “one” God (I Corinthians 8:4). But this one God is the Triune God. Whatever else is held to be a god is an idol. Is it right for you to pray to idols, to take part in idol worship?
Should you pray to the holy angels? Though they are highly exalted, they are but “ministering spirits” (Hebrews 1:14), who carry out God’s will and command. They cannot hear and grant prayer. David, by the Holy Spirit, says to God: “O Thou that hearest prayer, unto Thee shall all flesh come” (Psalm 65:2). And what are we to think of the invocation of saints as practiced in the Roman Catholic Church? Listen to what the prophet says to God: “Doubtless Thou art our Father, though Abraham be ignorant of us, and Israel acknowledge us not. Thou, O Lord, art our Father, our Redeemer; Thy name is from everlasting” (Isaiah 63:16). The saints in heaven, the real saints, are ignorant of us and acknowledge us not and hear us not. And the saints of the Pope’s making are nothing. We should pray to God alone, who is our Father and our Redeemer and our Comforter; He hears and grants our prayer; He is almighty and most gracious to us in Christ Jesus.
PRAYER – O true, gracious, and loving God, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, who has revealed Thyself to me so graciously for my salvation, and who so kindly invites me to call on Thee: why should I address my prayer to anyone but to Thee alone? Far be it from me to do so! Do but grant me Thy continuing grace to address Thee with full confidence, and unceasingly seek Thy grace and help, firmly believing that Thou wilt surely hear and answer my prayer prayed according to Thy will, Thy Word. Amen.
My Maker, strengthen Thou my heart;
O my Redeemer, help impart;
blest Comforter, keep at my side,
that faith and love in me abide.
(Hymn 541, st. 4 – TLH)