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 91:11

King James Version         

Study the Inner Meaning

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11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.

   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 341

Related New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:



Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Genesis 28:15

Exodus 23:20

Matthew 4:6

Luke 11

Hebrews 1:14

Bible Word Meanings

keep
"Keeping" in the Bible generally has to do with controlling the actual actions of life, though in some cases it can mean holding something away...

ways
These days we tend to think of "roads" as smooth swaths of pavement, and judge them by how fast we can drive cars on them....

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.


 Guardian Angels
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 He Shall Give His Angels Charge Over You
Make a collage showing a child with two beautiful guardian angels, using a photograph of the child and the color illustrations of angels provided for this project.
Project | Ages 4 - 10

 Memory Verse: Our Guardian Angels
Activity | Ages 4 - 14

 Quotes: Our Guardian Angels
Teaching Support | Ages over 15

 Symbols of the Lord's Protection
Teaching Support | Ages over 12

 The Parable of the Tares
"Good and evil uncomfortably coexisting is the reality of life. And this story describes how we are to deal with certain evils in our lives."
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 Trust in the Lord
A New Church Bible story explanation for teaching Sunday school. Includes lesson materials for Primary (3-8 years), Junior (9-11 years), Intermediate (12-14 years), Senior (15-17 years) and Adults.
Teaching Support | Ages over 3

 Trust in the Lord (3-5 years)
Project | Ages 4 - 6

 Trust in the Lord (6-8 years)
Project | Ages 7 - 10

 Trust in the Lord (9-11 years)
Project | Ages 11 - 14


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