Commentary

 

Learning to Pray      

By Rev. Kurt Horigan Asplundh

The Word is full of prayers to express our heartfelt states. They have a special power to open heaven and give us strength against evils and falsities.

"The Word in its literal sense, or the natural, is in it fullness, and also in its power; and by means of it man is in conjunction with the heavens" (The Word 15)

This power becomes effective when the Word is read or recited reverently by people on earth (Divine Providence 256, Apocalypse Explained 1066[4]).

Through prayers from the Word the Lord literally can "give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways" (Psalm 91:11).

Here are some examples from the Word, of prayers for personal strength:

"Direct my steps by Your word,
And let no iniquity have dominion over me,
Redeem me from the oppression of man,
That I may keep Your precepts.
Make Your face shine upon Your servant,
And teach me Your statutes." (Psalm 119:133-135)

"Lord, help me stop worrying anxiously about tomorrow, and give me strength to face the troubles of this day." (Adapted from Matthew 6:3-4)

"I am a little child O Lord, I do not know how to go out or come in.... Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and evil." (1 Kings 3:7, 9)

Of course, there are many more. Here are just a few more references that you can look up:

Prayers for troubled states: Psalm 4:1, Psalm 7:1, Psalm 42:1, Psalm 86:6-7.

Prayers for mercy and forgiveness: 2 Samuel 24:10, Psalm 25:7, 11, Psalm 130:1-5, Luke 18:13.

Prayers of personal commitment: Mark 12:30, Psalm 37:5.

Prayers of comfort: Psalm 90:1-2.

In so many instances, these prayers have great spiritual power and beauty - not just because of their natural language, but also because, when we read them, we open our minds to the Lord's influx. He says,

"Behold, I stand at the door, and knock; if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me." (Revelation 3:20)

When we pray, we are hearing His voice, and opening the door.

"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For you, Lord, are with me; Your rod and your staff, they comfort me." (Psalm 23:4)

The Bible

 

Psalms 130:1-5

Study the Inner Meaning

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1 Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O LORD.

2 Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.

3 If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O LORD, who shall stand?

4 But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.

5 I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.

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   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 380


Other references to this chapter:

Apocalypse Revealed 151, 279

A Brief Exposition of New Church Doctrine 100

True Christian Religion 764


References from Swedenborg's drafts, indexes & diaries:

Apocalypse Explained 179, 326

Related New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:


  Spiritual Topics:



Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Exodus 34:7

Deuteronomy 9:27

2 Samuel 12:13

1 Kings 8:39, 40

Ezra 9:15

Job 2, 22:23

Psalms 5:3, 28:2, 33:20, 103:3, 119:81, 143:2

Isaiah 55:7

Lamentations 3:55

Daniel 9:9

Micah 7:18

Ephesians 1:7

Bible Word Meanings

lord
The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

hear
Thanks to modern science, we now understand that hearing actually happens in the brain, not the ears. The ears collect vibrations in the air and...

voice
In Genesis 27:22, 'voice' relates to truth, and 'hand,' to good.

iniquities
In the Word three terms are used to mean bad things that are done. These three are transgression, iniquity, and sin, and they are here...

stand
'To stay with,' as in Genesis 32:4, relates to the life of truth when accompanied by good, and in this instance, it means to take...

feared
Fear has various significations according to the thing which causes it. Fear signifies love. Fear, as in Gen 28:17, signifies a holy change.

the Lord
The Bible refers to the Lord in many different ways, which from the text seem indistinguishable and interchangeable. Understood in the internal sense, though, there...

soul
The nature of the soul is a deep and complicated topic, but it can be summarized as "spiritual life," who we are in terms of...

word
'Word,' as in Psalms 119:6-17, stands for doctrine in general. 'The Word,' as in Psalms 147:18, signifies divine good united with divine truth. 'Word,' as...

Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library at the New Church Vineyard website.


 Keeping in a State of Hope
Worship Talk | Ages over 18


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